Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Nice Flight to Yankton

On Sunday, my dad and I took a little trip to Chan Gurney Airport.

We took off from the 1956 Cessna 172's home base at Norfolk Karl Stephan Airport, where I learned to fly.

The wind was a bit stiff, 12mph gusting to 25mph. The good news was that the wind was out of 190, right down the runway. This, more than anything else, determined where we would do our bathroom stop. Yankton's runway 19 (in the direction of 190) is a nice 3500 foot long runway. Just perfect for us.

I was in the left seat to begin with on this one, and since I had not been flying in a little while, mid August, we decided that I would do two touch and goes to get the hang of flying again. This is a common practice with recreational pilots. We need three landings every three months to remain "current," leagaly transport passangers, so many pilots do a few patterns to meet their requriement as well as to re-aquire the feel for their airplane... and it is fun.

After our preflight, and run up, I did the announcement that we were depearting runway 19, for touch and go. I hit 80 MPH and barely had to rotate and we were airborne like a rocket. Tons of lift on a windy day.
My two landings were good and off we headed to Yankton about 80 miles away. We were flying north so the wind helped us out tremendously giving us a ground speed of around 130 MPH. Nice and fast.

Unlinke Norfolk, Runway 1-19 is not the primary at Yankton, 13-31 is. On 13-31 they have their ILS set up and as we were flying in, we were in contact with another airplane that was shooting ILS approaches on the cross-wind runway. Not a lot of fun with this much wind. He was in a Cirrus aircraft:

and was a lot faster than were. He was in and out while we were inbound.

I made an OK landing at Yankton, I came in a bit low and slow, and I did not add power until it was a bit late. I put it down kind of hard...

Anyway we went for our bathroom stop and what was sitting on the tarmac than a Columbia 300!!!

Looks like it is going 200kts sitting still!!
After drooling over the Columbia for a bit we switched pilots and headed back to OFK. Against the wind we made about 70MPH with dad in the left seat. It took us about an hour to get back. Dad made a great landing, and we were home.

All in all we logged about three hours in the cockpit. Fun trip!

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